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The Misadventures of Mrs. B: Spinning My Wheels?

Cook. Writer. Wife. Daughter. Sister. Friend. Klutz.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Spinning My Wheels?

Friends, I need your advice!

See, I've never been what you might call "proficient" when it comes to time management.  I'm more the "Ohmygod I have so much to do it's making my brain shut down, time to take a nap and sort it all out later" kind of gal.  The "I'll think about that tomorrow", Scarlett O'Hara sort.

I compose to-do lists, but somehow while in the midst of trying to finish my tasks I always get sidetracked by other things that I need to do which didn't make it to my list.  So I start doing those things.  And by the end of the day I feel as though I've done nothing but spin my wheels.  So I eat lots of chocolate in order to soothe my feelings of inadequacy.

And never has this problem been so glaringly obvious than in relation to blogging.

There is no way that a non-blogger could understand everything that goes into running a blog, outside of physically creating posts.  And I know that each blogger does things differently, especially in relation to the topics they blog about.  For me, most of the time there's the obvious cooking/photo taking/minor photo editing aspect.  Then there's the creation of a post.  And of course the eating of what I cooked.  But what happens after I click "Publish Post"?

Numerous things.  I tweet.  I Facebook.  I link to many memes and make it a point to visit and comment on as many other links as humanly possible (I've blown entire days doing this, truly, but have found some great friends and have drummed up a few readers as well).  I email my own commentors and sometimes am lucky enough to start conversations with them.  I tell myself that I should put recipes up on Tasty Kitchen but usually forget (I think I've remembered, like, twice).  I submit to other food sites.  I go through my reader.  I visit forums.  I tweet some more.  I try to remember to Stumble (this is a more recent discovery of mine...late to the party, as always).  Now I'm also a contributing blogger for About One (my foccacia recipe went up today!) and have another project in the pipeline which I alluded to last month - this is a paying gig but I still don't want to say anything definite because even though I submitted my signed paperwork a couple of days ago I haven't received confirmation of receipt. 

Then? I tweet some more.  Sometimes the Twitter stream is moving so rapidly that I just read tweets.  Me and my voyeuristic tendencies.

The result: I'm exhausted.  I am really 100% loving all of the talking, sharing and communicating which is going on.  Not to mention learning.  I'm having so much fun, and there's no way I'm giving up this time.

But I'm tired, too.  And the worst part? I feel like all I'm doing is spinning my wheels.  If I felt like I was accomplishing something it would be one thing.  But all I'm doing is eating more and more chocolate to compensate for feelings of inadequacy because I just can't get it all done.  I can't visit all my friends every day.  I can't comment on all of my fellow meme linkers' blogs.  Sometimes I don't manage to get back to all of my beautiful commentors.  I can't churn out brilliant post after brilliant post.  There's only so much brilliance in my head.

But still I tippity-type away.

Don't even get me started on how "real life" may be suffering.

So I ask you, my wise bloggy friends: Have you been in my shoes? Do you have a blogging schedule? Do certain forms of blog-related activity take precedence over others? Are you a Twaddict? (I don't know if that's a word or if I just made it up right now)  Share with me!  Or, send chocolate.  Preferably the dark variety.



Anonymous redkathy said...

OM Gosh yes we all go though this. And yes, you could be spinning your wheels at times. A plan my friend is the only way! Check out for reliable(most important) newbie blogging info.

Read up on the most effective tools for twitter and use one to help manage time. Connecting is very important for readership. I use HootSuite, the free version. There are some links on my site to reliable bloggers whose blogs have great info.

I am just now in the process of re-vamping my lifestyle blog plan. Exhausting!

Hope this helps!

February 4, 2011 at 2:40 PM

Blogger Joey @ Big Teeth and Clouds said...

I just like to keep my email inbox clean. If I can do that (which is just responding to comments left on my blog) I figure it's enough. Low expectations = my key to happiness!

February 4, 2011 at 2:58 PM

Blogger Linda @ A La Carte said...

Here it is 3pm and I have been on my laptop all day. What have I accomplished? I have read and answered all my email. I've read all the posts in my Reader and I even have done two loads of laundry. Not much I must admit. I need to limit myself on the computer or my world will fall apart. Hope you get some anawers, I'm still searching.

February 4, 2011 at 3:06 PM

Blogger Shell said...

I've learned that I can only do so much. That I'll never actually be caught up. So, I just do the best I can and forget about the rest of it.

February 4, 2011 at 4:36 PM

Blogger The Zany Housewife said...

I guess I have some kind of blogging schedule...even though, now that I think about it, I never really stick to. As for Twitter, I'm about to kick it to the curb. I find myself, more often than not, talking to no one. Or to myself. I get fed up with the blog and twitter cliques.

I agree with Shell's comment above. You can only do so much, don't stress out over it. People will understand. :)

February 4, 2011 at 7:23 PM

Blogger Real Life Reslers said...

OMg!!!!!!!! I feel that way all the time. I try so hard to keep up with both my blog and my youtube channel, but at times I feel like I'm just doing a bad job at both.

February 4, 2011 at 7:46 PM

Blogger Alison said...

Oh my goodness! Thank you so much for posting this! I didn't get a chance to read the other comments yet, but I just had to be sure to tell you how much I can totally relate to this post!

My daughter's bedtime WAS my ideal time to post and take care of all that other behind the scenes blog business, but in recent months, she hasn't been cooperating at all at bedtime. And everything is suffering because of her clingy-ness. If I blog, the house suffers. If I focus on only the household chores, then I suffer.

I feel guilty for not reading more blogs and visiting new friends that took the time to stop by and visit my the way, thanks for stopping by and leaving me a wonderful comment. You are one of the few that I've had the time to come and see.....I feel maybe in this case, I was meant to read this post and know that there is someone else feeling what I am feeling right now!

Congrats on the paying gig. Can't wait to read more about it....when I get the chance. ;)

February 5, 2011 at 12:02 AM

Anonymous Brandie@thecountrycook said...

Thanks for commenting on my blog. I'm following you now :) I am VERY new to the blogging party but I'm starting to see what you are talking about. I am starting to limit my hours. I just cannot comment back to everyone who is commenting on my page although I am EXTREMELY grateful they say anything. Just keep it real, be yourself, and set hours and timeframe. If you do that, the readers will come. It may take a while but they will come. I think home life has to come first. Now, if you're trying to make a ton of money from this, then you gotta spin your wheels a lot. But if you are doing it for the pure enjoyment, then I say don't worry about that other stuff. Other bloggers understand the time constraints :)

February 5, 2011 at 1:47 PM

Blogger Sweet and Savory said...

Jen, I came here to tell you, I will be glad to hire you as a taste tester but I see you could not take on that added responsibility.

I don't have the solution but I know I can't let myself drown in Bloggerville. The answer is simple if I could put it, into effect.

Prioritize. If I would really grade papers for my class and clean my house first, I could blog without pressure but I want to check my email and see what has happened on the blog, while away. Then, I get transformed into a blogger and good intentions disappear. If I can beat it, then you can too. One of us just has to start. You do it. :)

February 6, 2011 at 2:04 AM

Blogger MsB.Plan said...

planning is the key, or at least trying to plan your blogging time is good - that's what i try to do, but if my husband is on th internet then i don't feel bad if i am blogging too.

We don't have a baby yet and that helps.

I try to tweet and facebook, but I am not that very good at that. So I do what i know best, read and comment on my fellow bloggers' posts.

February 6, 2011 at 4:32 AM

Blogger Kristen said...

I finally had to come up with a schedule for answering comments. My posts on Wednesday and the weekends get the fewest comments, so that is the time that I go back and answer them. It takes me about 3 hours each time, but those are the days that I have the least going on in "real" life. I also have a pretty good handle on a posting schedule, but it took a LONG time to get there.

All I can offer is encouragement to keep at it!

February 6, 2011 at 10:51 AM

Blogger Katie @ This Chick Cooks said...

I've only been doing it a few month but it is so easy to let it eat away at your time. I try to find the happy medium of blog time and other stuff time. I figure its just for fun so if I start to obsess I try to put things back into the right perspective of what is really important. good luck! I always enjoy your blog :)

February 6, 2011 at 2:43 PM

Blogger Lin said...

ABSOLUTELY! I have so been there, am there now, and will undoubtedly be there again! I'm setting out to spend a scheduled 30 minutes a day doing something blog-related. That's my dedicated time...probably to write. But, what about all of the relationship-building? That's the part that really eats time, but is so worth it. Definitely haven't found the balance yet. Still learning...

Looking forward to learning along with you at the SITS 31DBBB Challenge!

February 6, 2011 at 6:52 PM

Blogger alicia said...

I think any blogger has been here or will soon be here, that is if they blog regularly. It's a full time gig. I have had to scale back for sanity purposes. I miss reading as much. I miss the connections. Sorry, no advice here. But good luck.

February 6, 2011 at 9:29 PM

Blogger Jenny said...

Wow. I'm sorry. You do sound overwhelmed. I wish I could make you a nice cup of tea and just chat away about this.

I used to do that to myself but I had to stop. I prioritized everything and decided what was important to me.

And it was the writing. The daily act of writing...which I always do ON my blog and also independently.

The commitment to blog every day is the jump start I need to be sure I write every day.

I try and visit when I can and let go of all the guilt.

I think as bloggers we all know what we're facing. If people criticize how often we visit, then they will eventually just visit another blog.

I think you should try and put the guilt aside, do what makes YOU happy and what fulfills you.

You will never please everyone all the time, no matter how hard you might try.

Hugs and good luck!

February 7, 2011 at 4:00 PM

Anonymous Ginger Wench said...

Hi there, Mrs. B! I love your writing style!

I'm lucky enough to have a close friend that I struggle through daily tasks with. We both went through a phase where we felt like we too were spinning our wheels. Eventually, we figured out that there is only so much a human can do in one day, and because of that, we have to decide what's important to US.

Still, some days turn into a string of fires to be put out... And when that happens, we do the best we can to provide the highest quality of work possible under the circumstances, remembering the whole time that there's nothing that can't be fixed!

For me, it's a little easier to prioritize since my client's needs always come first. I'm trying to learn how to make time for my own business' needs in the midst of providing quality service to others. Nobody said it would be easy, huh? lol

Be yourself, and do the best you can. We can't ask for more!
(one day at a time works best for me)

February 7, 2011 at 4:27 PM

Blogger Megan, Maggie, Mama said...

I've definitely been there, the days that I've spent trying to make the blog rounds in order to get more visibility. But then I decided that I didn't want to spend my day feeling tied down to growing my blog! I am writing as an outlet, and as a conversation with friends - but I don't want to have a giant blog that needs to be managed. So I facebook posts sometimes, and I comment on the blogs I read & enjoy and have something to say about. It's been a little sad sometimes seeing less traffic, but most of the blog comment hits are one-time visitors anyway, so it's not really doing much for readership! Letting go is the hardest part... try it for a week and see how it feels!

February 9, 2011 at 11:05 AM


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